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April 9, 2010 at 12:24 PM
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Markets up early on Friday

NEW YORK, April 9 (UPI) -- U.S. markets turned higher Friday morning with investors anticipating first-quarter corporate reports will show improvement in a recovering economy.

Alcoa, traditionally the first significant report released, releases its first-quarter earnings after close of trading Monday.

In midmorning trading, the Dow Jones industrial average added 52.67 points or 0.48 percent to 10,979.74. The Standard & Poor's 500 index added 5.15 or 0.43 percent to 1,191.59. The Nasdaq composite index added 9.11 or 0.37 percent to 2,44592.

The benchmark 10-year Treasury note lost 7/32 to yield 3.92 percent.

The euro rose to $1.3458 from Thursday's $1.3349. Against the yen, the dollar rose to 93.43 yen from Thursday's 93.36 yen.

In Japan, the Nikkei 225 index rose 0.32 percent, 30.88, to 11,204.34.

Canada posts small employment gain

OTTAWA, April 9 (UPI) -- New employment in Canada was up marginally in March, but not enough to lower the 8.2 percent unemployment rate, Statistics Canada reported Friday.

Despite a loss in full-time employment, the net gain based on part-time new jobs was 18,000, the agency said.

The largest increases were in professional, scientific and technical services, and in construction and natural resources.

"Following a four-month pause in growth, construction added 21,000 workers in March," StatsCan said. "Employment in natural resources increased by 13,000 in March and has been trending up since October 2009."

Regional gains were made in Quebec, Ontario and Saskatchewan and the situation was largely unchanged in the other provinces and territories, the report said.

Apple to launch iAd, a new revenue stream

CUPERTINO, Calif., April 9 (UPI) -- U.S. computer company Apple Inc. says it will add an advertising option to its mobile device software, providing a revenue stream for application developers.

The company made the announcement Thursday, The Wall Street Journal reported.

In the new program, called iAd, Apple would collect 40 percent of the revenue and application developers would get 60 percent.

Apple's App Store now allows program developers to offer their own programs for users to buy, although many are offered free.

The applications -- for entertainment, business and other fields -- are downloaded onto iPhones, iPads or other Apple devices.

IAd proposes to turn developers into an army of ad salesmen and women and cash in on a potentially lucrative market.

Apple Chief Executive Officer Steve Jobs said 85 million iPhones and iPods have been sold -- meaning customers are carrying potential mobile billboards.

A spokesman for Google said, "This is more evidence of how quickly mobile advertising is evolving and growing."

Rents fall in Southern California

LOS ANGELES, April 9 (UPI) -- A glut of housing options has pushed Southern California rents lower after a long period of increases, a real estate research group said.

Casden Real Estate Economics Forecast said a high number of foreclosures and increased unemployment would contribute to a 3.5 percent average decline in rent in Los Angeles County this year.

Rents would drop 2.4 percent in Orange County and less than 1 percent in nearby San Bernadino and Riverside counties, the Los Angeles Times reported Friday.

Rents in Los Angeles County fell 5.8 percent in 2009 after being on the rise in previous years.

With the economy slow, an additional 5,700 apartments were added to the housing market last year in Los Angeles County and 4,800 are expected to be built this year, the newspaper said.

"The takeaway is that the economy is showing some small signs of improvement. All markets are going to perform better than the previous year, but for some that still means a decline," said University of Southern California Professor Tracey Seslen at the Lusk Center for Real Estate.

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